Homophobic comments by ex-boybander Brian McFadden on Auckland's MoreFM earlier this month were a 'joke' and his thoughts on men wearing the colour pink should not be taken out of context, says the singer.
Telling an on-air caller that men shouldn't wear pink, McFadden announced in a live broadcast: "Saying pink is a form of red is the same as saying homosexual is a form of male," and later affected a girly laugh. The comments were blasted as 'terrible' and 'unacceptable' by Rainbow Youth's Robert Marshall.
In a statement provided by his publicist, McFadden told Sydney's Daily Telegraph that his comments were tongue-in-cheek and should not be taken out of context. "To come to the conclusion that I am homophobic from these sentences is far from the truth," the statement read.
"Some of my friends and colleagues are gay and if I was truly homophobic then I have picked the wrong industry."
Simon Margan, a spokesman for Sydney-based Community Action Against Homophobia, made the distinction between McFadden's comments and Sydney broadcaster John Laws' homophobic 'pillow biter' comment about Queer Eye's Carson Kressley: "It's hard to directly link the two, but people have to be aware of their influence and the values they are instilling in the community."
Since GayNZ.com broke this story on Saturday, McFadden's remarks have been reported by news media, gossip websites and blogs around the world, with headlines varying from 'McFadden accused of homophobia' through to 'McFadden is a homophobe'.
NineMSN found two pictures of McFadden wearing different pink-coloured tops, and Sydney's Daily Telegraph ran a gallery of "sexy Aussie men who are not afraid to wear pink in public."
Our YouTube clip containing the audio of McFadden's comments has had almost 2,000 views, and attracted comments from listeners hoping that the singer's career would be 'ruined' by the story.
Brian McFadden's More FM comments can be heard on the YouTube clip below.